Immigration Issues/Cap-gap travel
in short my situation is like this:
- OPT and F-1 expire July 1st
- H1 has been approved for October 1st
- Therefore I fall into the new provisions that extend my OPT until October 1st
- Waiting for the new I-20 from my university that will reflect the OPT extensions
- I need to travel internationally after July 1st and return before October 1st. Will I be able to take my new I-20 to the American embassy in my home country and get my F-1 renewed until October? Will this be sufficient for me to return?
It seems to be a gray area with no definitive answer so far so if you know the answer, I would be most grateful!
The USCIS has stated that you can reenter on F prior to Oct 1st change to H. It would have been fine if you had a valid F visa. But in your case obtaining a F visa for couple of months may be risky. The immigration rules are not that flexible to allow for all possibilities.
I suggest that you not to do this, if it is absolutely necessary to travel you could leave the country and come back on H visa.